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The UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and China’s Protection of the Right to Education of the Persons with Disabilities
April 08,2019   By:CSHRS
The UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and China’s Protection of the Right to Education of the Persons with Disabilities
 
XU Qiaoxian* & WU Tian**
 
Abstract: The UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities effective in 2008 explicitly stipulates that Member States shall guarantee that people with disabilities enjoy the right to education free from discrimination and without prejudice to equal opportunities. The Chinese government made amendments to the Law of the People’s Republic of China on the Protection of Persons with disabilities and the Regulation on the Education of the Persons with Disabilities and issued a series of rules on the Education of the Persons with Disabilities so as to actively implement the Convention. In recent years, the number and proportion of children with disabilities who receive education in China and the number of students with disabilities receiving high school and higher education have been on the rise annually. However, there is still a gap in the level of education on all stages between persons with disabilities and persons without, presenting a huge challenge for the achievement of the right to education of persons with disabilities. We should continue to actively fulfill the obligations prescribed by the Convention to protect the right to education, explore the construction of integrated education, support the maintenance system, strive to improve the quality of special education, allocate resources for the education of persons with disabilities, and emphasize the appraisal of the education of persons with disabilities.
 
Keywords: UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Dis-abilities, persons with disabilities, education situation, right to education
 
I. Introduction
 
According to the statistics of the United Nations, persons with disabilities account for 10 percent of the total population in the world. While based on the latest statistics, more than one billion people are suffering from some form of disability, accounting for about 15 percent of the total population worldwide.1 The UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities was adopted in 2006 and entered into force in 2008 as the first binding international legal instrument explicitly taking persons with disabilities as the objects for protection. The Convention consists of four parts. The principles of equality and non-discrimination, the requirement for states parties to recognize that all persons are equal before and under the law and are entitled without any discrimination to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law, and the prohibition of all discrimination on the basis of disability are stipulated in it. The Convention enshrines the rights of persons with disabilities to participate in politics, economy, society, culture, and public life, and so on, from the perspective of international law and provides specific provisions on the corresponding obligations of the state parties. According to article 24, state parties recognize the right of persons with disabilities to education. With a view to realizing this right without discrimination and on the basis of equal opportunity, state parties shall ensure an inclusive education system at all levels and lifelong learning. Persons with disabilities are not excluded from the general education system on the basis of their disability. Persons with disabilities can access an inclusive, quality and free primary education and secondary education on an equal basis with others in the communities in which they live in order to fully develop their potential and sense of dignity and self-worth, strengthen respect for human rights, develop the personality, talents and creativity of persons with disabilities, as well as their mental and physical abilities, to their fullest potential, and enable persons with disabilities to participate effectively in a free society.2 On March 30, 2007, Wang Guangya, the permanent representative of China to the United Nations, signed the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities on behalf of China. In June, 2008, the NPC Standing Committee of China adopted the Convention which entered into force in China in September the same year.
 
Realization of the right to education of persons with disabilities involves pre-school education, compulsory education, secondary education, higher education and life-long education.3 According to the Communiqué on Major Statistics of the Second China National Sample Survey on Disability, there are 3.87 million children with disabilities from 0-14, accounting for 4.66 percent of the total population of persons with disabilities. Among them, 2.46 million are at school age from 6-14.4 China implements a double-track education combining “general education” with “special education” for the education of persons with disabilities. Most of the persons with moderate and mild disabilities can receive general education while those with severe disabilities can receive special education. In the past decade, the Chinese government has implemented the legislative concepts, basic principles, and major contents for protection of the right to education of persons with disabilities in the Convention through revising the laws and regulations on the education of persons with disabilities and promulgating and im-plementing rules and regulations for the education of persons with disabilities. Based on the content of legislation and institutional arrangements in the field of education for persons with disabilities in the past decade and the data from Educational Statistics Yearbook of China (2006-2016), China Statistical Yearbook on the Work for Persons with Disabilities (2006-2017), and relevant academic researches, this paper analyzes the realization of the right to education for persons with disabilities with such indexes as the number and proportion for persons with different levels of disabilities to receive education of different periods and put forward the prospect of further protection of the right to education for persons with disabilities.
 
II. Legislation and Institutional Arrangements for Protection of the Equal Right to Education of Persons with Disabilities
 
A. Amendment to Law on the Protection of Persons with Disabilities and Regulation on the Education of Persons with Disabilities
 
In order to implement the specific provisions of the Convention on the obligations of the state parties to protect the right to education of persons with disabilities, the amendment to the Law on the Protection of Persons with Disabilities in 2008 further clarifies the principal obligations of governments at all levels to establish educational institutions for persons with disabilities and provide funds for students with disabilities. Article 21 of the previous law that “the state shall set up educational institutions for persons with disabilities and encourage social forces to run schools and donate funds for schools” is amended to article 24 that “the people’s governments at and above the county level shall, on the basis of the number, distribution, disability categories and other factors of persons with disabilities, reasonably set up educational institutions for persons with disabilities, and encourage the social forces to run schools and donate funds to schools.” The provisions that “the state shall exempt students with disabilities who accept compulsory education from tuition and reduce sundry fees or exempt them from such fees according to actual situations” and “the state shall set up grant in aid to assist students who are poor and disabled” in article 18 of the previous law are amended to “the people’s governments at all levels shall provide gratuitous textbooks to students with disabilities and students from poor families of persons with disabilities receiving compulsory education and give them boarding stipend and other subsidies, and in accordance with the relevant provisions of the state, provide aids to students with disabilities and students from poor families of persons with disabilities who receive education other than the compulsory education.” On September 28, 2012, the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities of the UN pointed out in the conclusion of the first report on the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities by China that the policy of China to develop special education for persons with disabilities does not conform to the concept of inclusive education in the Convention.5 The Regulation on the Education of Persons with Disabilities amended in 2007 highlights the responsibilities and obligations of governments at all levels, especially governments at and above the county level, in protecting the equal rights to education of persons with disabilities and further clarifies the responsibilities and obligations of social organizations, regular schools, special education schools, and parents of persons with disabilities in eliminating discrimination in education and promoting persons with disabilities to receive suitable and high quality education. The amended regulation also clarifies that the quality of education of persons with disabilities should be improved through active promotion of inclusive education. Based on the disability categories and competence in acceptance of persons with disabilities, general education or special education could be chosen with priority given to the former.
 
B. Implementation of “two-phase” of special education promotion plan and professional standard for teachers of special education
 
China has implemented “Two-phase” of Special Education Promotion Plan and Professional Standard for Teachers of Special Education to provide the institutional foundation for improvement of the quality of special education. During a videophone conference on special education in China on January 27, 2014, Premier Li Keqiang stressed that promotion of special education, as an important part of modernization of education, is of great significance for ensuring the right of persons with disabilities to equally participate in the social activities, increasing their well-being, and improving social equality and justice.6 Seven departments including the Ministry of Education, National Development and Reform Commission, the Ministry of Civil Affairs, the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Human Resource and Social Security, National Health and Family Planning Commission, and China Persons with disabilities’ Federation, have jointly published “Two-phase” of Special Education Promotion Plan, providing top-level institutional design of the major objectives, key tasks, and main measures for developing the cause of special education and improving the quality of special education as well as the institutional foundation for local education administrative departments to develop special education. Special Education Promotion Plan (2014-2016) proposes to fully promote inclusive education; preliminarily establish a special education system with rational layout, connected periods of education, cooperation between general education and vocational education, and integration of medical care and education; construct the special education service and guarantee mechanism with financial investment, social support, full coverage, and great convenience; and realize the goal that 90 percent of children with impaired eyesight, hearing or mental disability can receive compulsory education by 2016. Special Education Promotion Program (2017-2020) proposes that the enrollment rate of children with disabilities in compulsory education will have reached over 95 percent by 2020; the ability to ensure learning in regular classroom and sending teachers to the residences of persons with severe disabilities will be fully enhanced; and the quality of special education will be fully improved with sufficient teachers for special education, a sound national curriculum and textbook system for special education, and overall improvement of the quality of learning in regular classrooms. In 2015, the Ministry of Education promulgated Professional Standards for Teachers of Special Education (for Trial Implementation)7to clarify the basic professional requirements for qualified special education teachers and the fundamental norms for their teaching. As the basic principle to guide the professional development of special education teachers, the standard is having a positive impact on improving the efforts to build a professional team of special education teachers, the professional quality of special education teachers, and the quality of special education.
 
C. Publishing relevant rules and regulations for accelerating the development of vocational education for persons with disabilities
 
The Convention, as a core human rights convention of the UN, marks the first time in the history of international human rights that providing reasonable accommodation to persons with disabilities is human right.8 It is clearly stated in article 24 of the Convention that state parties shall ensure that reasonable accommodation is provided to persons with disabilities and persons with disabilities are able to access general tertiary education, vocational training, adult education and lifelong learning without discrimination and on an equal basis with others.9 In order to implement the requirements of the Convention and provide better guarantees for persons with disabilities in China to receive high school and higher education, four government departments including the Ministry of Education promulgated Opinions on Accelerating the Development of Vocational Education for Persons with Disabilities in 2018. It clarified that more opportunities should be provided for persons with disabilities to receive vocational education, with the emphasis on secondary vocational education, the amelioration of the basic conditions for schools carrying out vocational education for persons with disabilities, and improving the quality of vocational education for persons with disabilities. 10As the first guiding policy document focusing on the promoting of vocational education for persons with disabilities in China, it fully reflects the fundamental requirements for promoting the all-round development of persons with disabilities, which is of great significance to accelerating the construction of a modern education system, perfecting the education system for persons with disabilities, and pushing forward the cause of education for persons with disabilities in China. In order to ensure the equal right of persons with disabilities to participate in the National College Entrance Examination, the Ministry of Education and China Persons with disabilities’ Federation jointly promulgated Regulations on the Participation of Persons with Disabilities in National College Entrance Examination (Provisional) in May 2015. It clarified that admission and examination institutions should provide 12 necessary conditions and reasonable accommodation, including examination papers in Braille and largesized typing, exemption from listening tests, priority in entering the examination sites, and appropriate extension of test time, based on the disability situation and needs of the students with disabilities, as well as the practical conditions of different regions under the premise of ensuring the safety and order of the examination.11 More and more high school students with disabilities have applied for the reasonable accommodation in the National College Entrance Examination and more high school students with disabili-ties have thus entered institutes of higher learning after passing the examination.
 
D. Promulgating the Plan for Promotion of National General Sign Language and Braille
 
It is clearly stated in the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities that state parties shall facilitate the learning of Braille, alternative script, augmenta-tive and alternative modes, means and formats of communication and orientation and mobility skills, facilitate peer support and mentoring, and facilitate the learning of sign language and the promotion of the linguistic identity of the deaf community.12 Sign language and Braille are special languages used by more than 30 million persons with hearing and visual disabilities in China. Promotion of national general sign language and Braille will not only safeguard the rights of persons with hearing and visual disabilities to the use of language but also play an important role in the learning of knowledge, acquisition of information, and social interaction of persons with disabilities for fairer participation in social life as well as equal realization of their rights and integrated development. Based on the tasks and objectives in the National Sign Lan-guage and Braille Standardization Action Plan (2015–2020) promulgated by China Persons with disabilities’ Federation, the Ministry of Education, State Language Com-mission, and the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film, and Television in 2015, the Publicity Department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, China Persons with disabilities’ Federation, the Ministry of Education, State Language Commission, and the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film, and Television jointly published the Notice on Promotion of National General Sign Language and Braille, Program for Promotion of National General Sign Language, and Program for Promotion of National General Braille to provide planning and design for the objectives, major measures, guarantee mechanism, and so on, of the promotion of sign language and Braille.13
 
III. Progress in the Education of Persons with Disabilities in the Past Decade
 
A. The level of compulsory education for children with disabilities has been on the rise annually
 
There are three major forms for children with disabilities to receive compulsory education in China: the first is to receive special education in special education schools; the second is to receive special education in special education classes in regular prima-ry schools and regular (vocational) junior high schools; the third is to learn in regular classroom of regular primary schools and regular (vocational) junior high schools. According to the statistics of education in the past decade, the number of special education schools has been on the rise every year. In 2007, there were a total of 1,618 special education schools in China. In 2016, the number had increased to 2,080. It is discov-ered after comparing the situation in the eastern, central and western regions that the eastern region has the largest number of special education schools which is followed by the central region and then the western region. Nevertheless, the annual increase rate of the number of special education schools in western regions from 2007 to 2016 is the highest among the three regions (See Table 1). The number of children with disabilities in schools has been on the rise annually. In 2007, the total number of children with disabilities in schools was 409,711. By 2016, the number had increased to 491,740.14 The gross enrollment rate of children with disabilities in compulsory education has been on the rise annually. From 2006 to 2010, the annual gross enrollment rate of children with impaired eyesight, hearing or mental disability in compulsory education nationwide was 52.13 percent, 57.11 percent, 56.87 percent, 61.11 percent, and 63.23 percent. The overall situation showed a growth tendency, except for a slight decrease from 2007 to 2008. The annual average growth rate for the five years was 4.94 percent.

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B. The number of students with impaired eyesight, hearing or mental disability in high school has been on the rise
 
High school education for persons with disabilities refers to education of persons with disabilities in regular high schools and secondary vocational schools. The number of students with impaired eyesight or hearing in high school showed a growth tendency from 2007 to 2016. In 2007, the number of students with impaired eyesight in classes of regular high schools in special education schools in China was merely 931. In 2013, the number reached the peak at 1,609. Although it dropped to 1,297 in 2015, it increased to 1,557 in 2016. In 2007, the number of students with impaired hearing in classes of regular high schools in special education schools in China was merely 4,047. In 2011, the number reached the peak at 6,198. In 2016, it dropped slightly to 6,129 (See Table 2).
 
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The purpose of secondary vocational education for persons with disabilities aims to help persons with disabilities master the skills to secure their own livelihoods, adapt to the modern society, live a dignified life and contribute to social development. There are mainly three forms of secondary vocational education for persons with disabilities in China: the first is to receive education in secondary vocational schools (classes) for persons with disabilities; the second is to receive vocational education for persons with disabilities only in regular vocational schools; and the third is to receive vocational education together with other students.16 From 2007 to 2016, the total number of students with impaired eyesight, hearing or physical disabilities in secondary vocational education had been basically stable with slight rise and decline. In 2007, the number of students with impaired eyesight in secondary vocational schools (classes) for persons with disabilities was merely 2,114. It reached the peak at 3,399 in 2010. In 2016, it dropped to 2,306. In 2007, the number of students with impaired hearing was merely 4,513. It reached the peak at 6,183 in 2009. In 2016, it dropped slightly to 4,006. In 2007, the number of students with impaired hearing was 2,401. It reached the peak at 3,333. In 2015, it dropped to 1,249. In 2016, it increased to 2,029. (See Table 3)
 
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C. The number of persons with disabilities in general tertiary education and colleges of special education has increased significantly
 
There are mainly two forms of higher education for persons with disabilities in China at present: the first is to take the National College Entrance Examination for receiving general tertiary education in regular institutions of higher learning; the second is to take the examination for students with impaired eyesight or hearing only17 for receiving special tertiary education in independent secondary colleges or departments for special education in regular institutions of higher learning. From 2007 to 2016, the number of students with impaired eyesight, hearing or limns admitted to the regular institutions of higher learning after taking the National College Entrance Examination rose annually with the fastest increase in the number of students with impaired eye-sight. In 2007, the number of students with impaired eyesight admitted to the regular institutions of higher learning after taking the National College Entrance Examination was merely 379. In 2016, it peaked at 1,217 with an annual average growth rate of 13.84 percent, which ranks first among the three disability categories. In 2007, the number of students with impaired hearing admitted to the regular institutions of high-er learning after taking the National College Entrance Examination was 466. In 2016, it reached 1,333, representing an annual average growth rate of 12.39 percent, which ranks the second among the three disability categories. In 2007, the number of stu-dents with physical disabilities admitted to the regular institutions of higher learning after taking the National College Entrance Examination was 4,389. In 2016, it peak at 6,015, with an annual average growth rate of 3.56 percent, which ranks third among the three disability categories. (See Table 4)
 
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From 2007 to 2016, the number of students with impaired eyesight or hearing admitted to institutes of higher learning with colleges or departments for special ed-ucation after taking the examination for students with impaired eyesight or hearing showed a growth tendency with comparatively faster growth rate for students with impaired hearing. In 2007, the number of students with impaired eyesight admitted to institutes of higher learning with colleges or departments for special education after taking the examination for students with impaired eyesight or hearing only was 212. In 2016, it peaked at 1,217, with an annual average growth rate of 6.03 percent. In 2007, the number of students with impaired hearing admitted to institutes of higher learning with colleges or departments for special education after taking the examina-tion for students with impaired eyesight or hearing only was 874. In 2016, it peaked at 1,445, with an annual average growth rate of 5.75 percent. (See Table 5)
 
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IV. Challenges for the Achievement of the Right to Education of Persons with Disabilities
 
A. The level of compulsory education for children with disabilities is still low and with obvious disparity between rural and urban areas as well as different regions
 
Comparing the data on the gross enrollment ratio of children in primary and ju-nior high school in Educational Statistics Yearbook of China, that for children with disabilities was 20-50 percentage points lower from 2006 to 2014.20 In the three forms of special education, the percentage of children with disability learning in the regular classrooms of regular primary schools and regular (vocational) junior high schools has declined and the percentage for the number of students in special education schools is increasing, which is contrary to the development trend of the world for children with disabilities to receive inclusive education in regular schools. There are still nearly 100,000 school-age children with disabilities who are not enrolled in school and over 80 percent of them are distributed in rural areas of the central and western regions. Due to the weak foundation, the gross enrollment rate of children with disabilities in compulsory education in the western region is far lower than that in the more developed eastern region. There are still no special education schools in over 500 counties with a population of less than 300,000. Compared to children with impaired eyesight, hearing, or a mental disability, the number of children with autistic disorders, cerebral palsy, severe or multiple disabilities who can receive education is much smaller. Because the support system of special education teachers and professionals for children with disability learning in regular classrooms hasn’t been established, the quality for the learning of children with disabilities in regular classrooms is comparatively low.
 
B. The number and proportion of persons with disabilities receiving high school education is to be improved
 
According to the statistics of the second China national sample survey on disability in 2006, the percentage of children with disabilities in high school in China was comparatively low at merely 5.62 percent.21 And over the past decade, the gross enrollment rate of persons with impaired eyesight or hearing in high schools is still far lower than that of ordinary students. In 2006, the gross enrollment rate of ordinary students in high schools was 59.8 percent. Increasing year by year to 87.0% in 2015, a total increase of 27.2% over the decade. In 2006, the gross enrollment rate of students with impaired eyesight in high schools was 5.41 percent. The number increased year by year to 6.17 percent in 2015, a total increase of merely 0.76 percent over the decade. In 2006, the gross enrollment rate of students with impaired hearing in high schools was 10.34 percent. It increased year by year to 38.65 percent in 2015, a total increase of 28.31 percent in a decade. (See Table 6) Besides, the total number of students with impaired eyesight, hearing, or limbs in secondary vocational education is declining. In Tibet and Hainan, students with impaired eyesight, hearing, or limbs barely have the opportunity to receive high school education.22
 
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C. The proportion and level of persons with disability receiving higher education are comparatively low
 
Due to the discrimination against persons with disabilities24, inadequate protection for them in the enrollment system and process of institutes of higher learning, and other reasons, the proportion of persons with disabilities receiving education in regular institutions of higher learning is still below average. From 2007 to 2016, the number of persons with disabilities in every 10,000 people admitted to higher education had been on the rise annually, yet the total proportion of persons with disabilities in those admitted to higher education is still low. In 2007, the number of people admitted to higher education in China was 5.6592 million, including 6,320 persons with disabilities. For every 10,000 people admitted to higher education, there were 11.17 persons with disabilities. With the growing number of people admitted to higher education later year on year, the number of persons with disabilities admitted to higher education also increased annually from 6,320 in 2007 to 10,534 in 2016. The number of persons with disabilities in every 10,000 people admitted to higher education also increased from 11.17 to 14.07 in 2016. However, as for the proportion, the number of persons with disabilities admitted to institutions of higher learning merely accounted for 0.14 percent of the total number of people admitted to institutions of higher learning even in 2016 which was the highest in the decade. There is a huge gap between it and the percentage of persons with disabilities in the total population at 6.39 percent in the second China national sample survey on disability.
 
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The level of students with impaired eyesight, hearing, or limbs in regular institutions of higher learning is low. There are more students taking short-cycle courses than those taking normal courses as undergraduates. The number of persons with disabilities with postgraduate degrees is very small nationwide. From 2006 to 2015, the number of students with impaired eyesight, hearing, or limbs admitted to regular institutions of higher learning rose. Among them, 34,984 took short-cycle courses while 33,220 took normal courses. The number of those taking short-cycle courses surpassed those taking normal courses. The average for those taking normal courses in the total number in the decade was 48.9 percent.26 From 2006 to 2015, the level of students with impaired eyesight or hearing in higher special education was comparatively low and most of them took short-cycle courses. The number of those taking short-cycle courses surpassed those taking normal courses in higher special education. In 2006, 986 students with impaired eyesight or hearing were admitted to higher special education colleges and the number of those taking normal courses accounted merely for 33.4 percent. The proportion increased later, yet the highest proportion was 42.9 percent in 2013.27
 
V. Prospects of Further Protection of the Equal Right to Education of Persons with Disabilities
 
Protection of the rights of persons with disabilities is the inherent requirement for realizing social justice which is the primary value of the social system.28 The work for persons with disabilities is an important part to promote social justice and educational equality as well as the realization of educational modernization. Meanwhile, it is the primary task to improve the people’s lives and accelerate the process of the moderate prosperity of persons with disabilities. China is not only a state party to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, but also a country with a large population of persons with disabilities. In order to better protect the equal right of persons with disabilities to education, China should take positive actions in the following aspects.
 
A. Actively promoting the concept of inclusive education and exploring the supporting policies and modes of practice
 
While putting forward the new ideas of inclusive education, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities clarifies that persons with disabilities enjoy the rights to participate in regular education and life-long education and stresses the obli-gations of state parties to provide reasonable support. The amended Regulation on the Education of Persons with Disabilities has also established the concept and institution for inclusive education.29At present, the education administrative departments and regular schools should actively explore and make supporting policies for persons with disabilities to receive inclusive education in regular kindergartens, schools, including institutions of higher learning, which covers admission, management in school, and employment upon graduation. The quality of inclusive education should be improved while satisfying the needs of persons with disabilities to receive inclusive education. China should pay special attention to the construction of a support system for learning in the classrooms of regular schools, explore the allocation of quota for relevant teachers and special education funds for persons with disabilities to learn in regular classrooms, and construct the teaching mode in line with the local economic, social, cultural and educational development level as well as development features to constantly improve the quality of learning in regular classroom for children with disabilities.
 
B. Emphasizing the professional training of teachers for special education to provide professional support for improving the quality of special education
 
All institutions of higher learning cultivating teachers for special education in the country should formulate scientific and rational programs for training special education talents, continuously improve the quality of talent training for special education, and provide professional support for the improvement of the educational quality of schools of special education in accordance with Professional Standard for Teachers of Special Education (for Trial Implementation) issued by the Ministry of Education. At the national level, preferential policies on special funds for education of persons with disabilities should be given to the central and western regions to support normal university in central and western regions to establish the departments of special education and admit students majoring in special education. The score for admission to the department of special education could be reduced appropriately. Meanwhile, more professional teachers of special education could be provided for the central and western regions by selecting students in these regions to study in institutions of higher learning focusing on special education in eastern regions who should return after graduation. For high school education, conditions should be created to collaborate with regular high schools to improve the quality of teaching. Meanwhile, cooperation should be established with regular vocational schools to make full use of the training bases and professional teachers to improve the teaching quality of special education.
 
C. Exploring policies to support education of persons with disabilities in high school and above to enhance the education level of persons with disabilities
 
China should explore the policy to provide high school education for persons with disabilities for free to ensure that more persons with disabilities can receive regular high school education and secondary vocational education. China should explore the policy to promote education for persons with disabilities in high schools, enhance the construction of high school departments in special education schools, and accelerate the development of secondary vocational schools for persons with disabilities. China should explore special policies to support persons with disabilities to receive higher education and support the existing departments and colleges for special education in regular institutions of higher learning to improve their level of education so as to provide more opportunities for persons with disabilities to receive higher special education at the undergraduate level and above. During the examination of institutions of higher learning for special education for admission of persons with disabilities, preferential policies should be given to provinces with less persons with disabilities receiving higher education in inland area and remote provinces, in particular, Hainan, Tibet, Qinghai, so as to provide more opportunities for persons with disabilities to receive higher education in this way. The institutions of higher learning for special education should set up the departments rationally in close relation to the demands of local economic and social development and the characteristics of persons with disabil-ities to provide more choices for students with disabilities and improve the proportion and quality of students with disabilities receiving higher education.
 
D. Improving the statistical indicator system for education of persons with disabilities to highlight the evaluation of development of education for persons with disabilities
 
China should construct a statistical indicator system for pre-school education of children with disabilities and improve those for compulsory education, high school, and higher education to provide monitoring and evaluation tools for the development of education for persons with disabilities. To be specific, during the period of pre-school education, statistical indicators focusing on pre-school classes run by special education schools, regular kindergartens accepting children with disabilities, non-governmental education institutions for children with disabilities, rehabilitation centers for early rehabilitation under the persons with disabilities’ federation, and other organizations should be established for statistics and monitoring. In the period of compulsory education, statistical indicators covering school-age children with disabilities, services of remote education or sending teachers to the residences of persons with severe disabilities, and so on, should be established to grasp such basic data as the change of the number of school-age children with disabilities, children requiring for teachers to go to their residence to teach them, and so on, in timely manner. For high school education, more indicators of students with disabilities should be added to collect high school education for students with different categories of disabilities, the number of students with disabilities admitted by vocational education, the total number of students with disabilities in the period, the total number of graduates, and so on. For higher education period, more indicators of students with disabilities should be added to collect the number of students receiving higher education, the total number of students with disabilities in the period, the total number of graduates, and so on.
 
* XU Qiaoxian ( 许巧仙 ), Professor, Director of the Center for Legislation and Policy Research on the Education of the Persons with Disabilities in Nanjing Normal University of Special Education.
 
**WU Tian ( 吴填 ), Associate Professor of Nanjing Normal University of Special Education. This paper is a periodical achievement of “Research on Marching and Optimization of Supply and Demand of Public Services for Persons with Disabilities” (Project No.:2017ZDIXM116) as a key project of philosophy and social sciences for Institutes of Higher Learnings in Jiangsu Province. The writing of the paper also received the financial support of “Disability and Development Research Base” (Project No.:2017ZSJD011) as a project of off-campus research base for Institutes of Higher Learnings in Jiangsu Province and Six Major Talents Peak Projects of Jiangsu Province (Project No.:2016JY-043).
 
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(Translated by HU Liang)
 
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14. Ministry of Education, Educational Statistics Yearbook of China (Beijing: People’s Education Publishing House, 2017).
 
15. China Persons with disabilities’ Federation, China Statistical Yearbook on the Work for Persons with Disabilities (2008 to 2017) (Beijing: China Statistics Press, 2017). At present, the statistical data merely cover the number of students with impaired eyesight or hearing in classes of regular high schools in schools for students with impaired eyesight, schools for students with impaired hearing, and special education schools. There is no specific data on the persons with disabilities of other categories who receive education of regular high school in regular schools.
 
16. He Yunxia, “Study on Problems and Countermeasures of Vocational Education for Persons with Disabilities,” Master diss. Hunan Normal University, 2011.
 
17. The examination for students with impaired eyesight or hearing only is the admission system approved by the Ministry of Education to provide independent papers and examinations by institutes of higher learning with colleges or departments for special education facing students with impaired eyesight or hearing. As early as 1987, the College of Special Education of Changchun University started to admit students with impaired eye-sight in this way.
 
18. He Yunxia, “Study on Problems and Countermeasures of Vocational Education for Persons with Disabilities.”
 
19. Ibid.
 
20. Ministry of Education, Educational Statistics Yearbook of China (2006-2014) (Beijing: People’s Education Publishing House, 2014). The gross enrollment rates of ordinary children in primary school from 2006 to 2014 were 106.3%, 106.2%, 105.7%, 104.8%, 104.6%, 104.2%, 104.3, 104.4%, and 103.8% respectively and the gross enrollment rates of ordinary children in junior high school from 2006 to 2014 were 97.0%, 98.0%, 98.5%, 99.0%, 100.1%, 100.1%, 102.1%, 104.1%, and 103.5% respectively.
 
21. Xu Baosheng, “On the Status Quo and Development Policy of Vocational Education of Persons with Disabil-ities,” Journal of Zhejiang Normal University (Social Sciences) 6 (2012).
 
22. He Yunxia, “Study on Problems and Countermeasures of Vocational Education for Persons with Disabilities.”
 
23. Ministry of Education, Educational Statistics Yearbook of China (2014) (Beijing: People’s Education Publishing House, 2015). Office for the Second China National Sample Survey on Disability, Statistics of the Second China National Sample Survey on Disability (Nationwide) (Beijing: China Statistics Press, 2007). The population of persons with impaired eyesight and hearing aged from 15-17 in these years is inferred from the second China national sample survey on disability.
 
24. Li Keqiang, Let Children with Disabilities Receive the Same Good Education to Others, accessed August 12, 2018. http://www.chinanews.com/gn/2014/01-27/5789843.shtml
 
25. China Persons with disabilities’ Federation, China Statistical Yearbook on the Work for Persons with Dis-abilities (2007 to 2016) (Beijing: China Statistics Press, 2017). Ministry of Education, Educational Statistics Yearbook of China (2006-2015) (Beijing: People’s Education Publishing House, 2016).
 
26. Ling Kang and Bai Xianchun, etc., Report on the Development of Work for Persons with Disabilities (2006-2015) (Beijing: China Statistics Press, 2017), 119.
 
27. Ibid., 120.
 
28. John Rawls, A Theory of Justice, trans. He Huaihong, etc. (Beijing: China Social Science Press, 1988), 1.
 
29. Ding Xiangshun, “UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and Development of Inclusive Education for Persons with Disabilities in China,” Chinese Journal of Special Education 6 (2017).
 
(Translated by Hu Liang)
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